Mary Ryder Home Resident

Brenda was born on March 23rd and has called St. Louis her home her entire life. After the passing of her husband, friends and family encouraged Brenda to move to Mary Ryder Home in February. “I was apprehensive at first, but the ladies and staff made me feel so welcomed,” Brenda said. “I really like Mary Ryder Home, I didn’t realize how lonely I was until I arrived here.”

Brenda’s creativity has flourished since becoming a Resident and her 3 year-old grandson Logan has benefited from it as well. “He absolutely loves coming here and helping his Bobo make crafts,” Brenda said. “He really wants to spend the night too since I have two beds in my room.”

In addition to making crafts, Brenda enjoys crocheting blankets and shawls, coloring in adult coloring books and stringing beads to make jewelry. Brenda stated, “my daughter calls my crafts my toys.” She is also considering sharing her talents with her fellow Residents and starting a crocheting class at the Home.

Mary Ryder Home Resident

Jeannine was born on November 11th in Greensboro, North Carolina, and has called St. Louis her home her entire life. She has also been a cherished Resident of Mary Ryder Home since 2011. “Mary Ryder Home is wonderful. They are there for everyone,” Jeannine says. “All of the staff members are very nice.” Jeannine loves living at the Home because “it is safe, very clean and
offers so many recreational activities.”

Jeannine is a social butterfly and attends many of the activities held at the Home. On any given day, Jeannine can be found expressing her creative side in art class, being competitive during Jeopardy, Trivia or Wii Bowling, and trying her luck at Bingo. She jokes, “If you’re bored at Mary Ryder Home, it’s your fault!”

Jeannine is also very computer savvy and enjoys connecting with friends on Facebook, playing Candy Crush and piecing together online puzzles. In addition, Jeannine is a huge animal lover (cats in particular) and would enjoy volunteering at a no-kill animal shelter.

Mary Ryder Home Resident

Joanie has suffered from Schizoaffective Disorder since the young age of 16 and spent nearly 20 years of her life at a local state mental hospital. “I didn’t have much hope for my life during that time.” When the hospital was abruptly condemned in 2011, Joanie had only one week to find shelter.

Luckily Joanie found more than a place to stay. She found her forever home at Mary Ryder Home, and our caregivers welcomed her with open arms. “This is the best place,” Joanie said. “You support me and encourage me not to give up.” She happily went on to say, “I wouldn’t be doing as good as I am without you.”

Through compassionate care and healing, Mary Ryder Home has helped Joanie thrive. Not only has Joanie attended classes at Forest Park Community College (and achieve A’s and B’s!), but she has also evolved into a passionate advocate for the importance of mental well-being. She regularly speaks to groups at Independence Center and George Warren Brown School of Social Work at Washington University about the topic. By sharing her story, she hopes to reduce the stigma about mental illness.